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Selectmen Meeting Minutes — April 19, 2011—3:30 p.m. —
Memorial Hall

Call to order: Chairman Joe Judd called the meeting to order. Other members present: Robert Manners and John Payne.

Final Review of Fiscal Year 12 Budget and Associated Town Meeting Warrant Articles -- Members of the Board reviewed the fiscal year 2012 budget and associated warrant articles. The following changes were made:

Police Department Salaries: Before beginning the discussion, Bob Manners left the room. Manners serves as a part-time Reserve Officer for the police department therefore he could not participate in the discussion. Chief Walker is seeking a salary increase for fulltime Patrolman, Gregory Bardwell. Chief Walker proposed an hourly rate of $21.50 with the hopes that the Board would also entertain a request to promote Greg to the position of Sergeant. John and Joe reviewed an analysis of salary ranges for towns of similar size. After a lengthy discussion, John proposed a motion to set Officer Bardwell's hourly rate at $20.00 per hour in anticipation of his promotion to Sergeant. Joe seconded the motion. Motion passed. This action reflects a budgetary reduction of: $3,120. John recommended that the Board revisit the wage and classification schedule in the new fiscal year. The schedule is outdated and limits one's ability for growth.

Council on Aging: Terry discovered that the lease payment was accounted for in two separate budgets (the Council on Aging budget and a Senior Center lease budget); therefore the operating budget reduced by $2,700.
Veteran's Benefits: a fourth veteran is receiving monthly benefits from the Town increasing the total annual cost to $43,441. To cover said costs, John presented a motion to increase the budgetary line account from $36,000 to $44,000. Bob seconded the motion. Motion passed unanimously.

Pratt Building Maintenance Account: John presented a motion to create a budgetary line item account to be managed and controlled by Arms Trustees for expenses relative to library building's maintenance and to fund the account at $700 this year. Arms Trustees would also contribute $700 annually for this purpose. Bob seconded the motion. Motion passed unanimously.

Article #14 Allocation from the Roof Repair Account: following a brief discussion, members of the Board agreed to leave this article on the warrant however, if DOER and the town cannot come to an agreement on the Cowell Gymnasium roof replacement project, the article will be passed over.

Special Ballot Questions: there will be potentially four questions placed on the ballot for the June election. The first question will represent the third and final step in creating a Cemetery Commission; the second and third questions relate to funding the Mohawk School District's proposed MSBA capital projects at Buckland-Shelburne Elementary and Mohawk; and the fourth question addresses the Cowell Gymnasium building investment. Before authorizing the two school District questions, Board members would like to find out more about the impact of a negative vote and whether the Town can seek a subsequent one should the first one fail.

DOER Grant: John met with a representative from InfraRed Analyzers on Monday evening. The infrared testing identified 5 areas of wet insulation on the Cowell Gymnasium roof. A full report is forth coming however; preliminary assessments suggest that the insulation should be replaced. Next Tuesday, John will meet Dan Fluerial to assess the roof drains. John is scheduled to have a conversation with representatives from DOER with the hopes that he can persuade them to fund a full roof-replacement at Cowell. DOER indicated earlier that only those expenses relative to energy efficiency (i.e. insulation) are eligible for reimbursement.

Cowell Gymnasium Mold Remediation Report: the Town received a detailed report from the Department of Public Health with regard to indoor air quality and mold remediation. Each Board member received a copy for review. Unsure of whether the building should be used in its' present condition, Joe placed a call to the Department of Public Health. During the meeting, Lisa Hebert, DPH Regional Indoor Air Quality Inspector returned Joe's call. She recommended sealing the basement level of the building (from the bathrooms back) until the town is able to address all of the mold-related problems. She also recommended cleaning the bathrooms in accordance with EPA "mold remediation guideline" to remove all surface molds. Given the potential costs associated with mold remediation; a new roof; and renovations associated with the police department relocation; members briefly discussed how to get a sense from the townspeople before investing large sums of money. John offered to address Cowell Gymnasium's concerns at town meeting with a follow-up ballot question at the June election. Members agreed that it would be wise to see how residents feel.

Public Bathroom Facilities: the Shelburne Falls Area Partnership has discussed the need for public bathroom facilities for several years. Over the past several months, Joe has been working with Mary Vilbon to identify potential sites and funding sources. In order to qualify for funding, the Town needs to complete an architectural and engineering study. Joe estimates the cost to be approximately $5,000. Joe hopes to bring the request before special town meeting voters in the near future.

Adjournment: John presented a motion to adjourn at 5:10 p.m. Joe seconded the motion. Motion passed.

Respectfully submitted,

Terry Mosher
Executive Secretary